Investment analysts at Piper Jaffray Companies assumed coverage on shares of General Mills, Inc. (NYSE:GIS) in a report issued on Wednesday, The Fly reports. The brokerage set an “underweight” rating on the stock.

GIS has been the subject of several other research reports. Deutsche Bank AG initiated coverage on shares of General Mills in a research note on Wednesday, February 15th. They set a “hold” rating and a $61.00 price objective for the company. Royal Bank of Canada reissued a “hold” rating on shares of General Mills in a research note on Sunday, March 12th. Credit Suisse Group AG reissued a “neutral” rating and issued a $65.00 price target on shares of General Mills in a research note on Thursday, February 2nd. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of General Mills from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, February 23rd. Finally, Sanford C. Bernstein cut shares of General Mills from a “market perform” rating to an “underperform” rating and set a $52.00 price target for the company. in a research note on Tuesday, March 21st. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have assigned a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $64.09.

Analyst Recommendations for General Mills (NYSE:GIS)

General Mills (NYSE:GIS) traded up 0.39% on Wednesday, reaching $56.91. The company had a trading volume of 2,388,587 shares. General Mills has a 1-year low of $55.57 and a 1-year high of $72.95. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $57.13 and its 200 day moving average price is $60.35. The firm has a market capitalization of $32.79 billion, a P/E ratio of 21.09 and a beta of 0.56. General Mills also saw some unusual options trading activity on Monday. Investors purchased 5,720 put options on the stock. This is an increase of approximately 156% compared to the typical volume of 2,236 put options.

General Mills (NYSE:GIS) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, March 21st. The company reported $0.72 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.71 by $0.01. General Mills had a net margin of 10.23% and a return on equity of 35.10%. The company had revenue of $3.79 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.82 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.65 EPS. General Mills’s revenue was down 5.2% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities analysts forecast that General Mills will post $3.06 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, May 1st. Investors of record on Monday, April 10th were given a $0.48 dividend. This represents a $1.92 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.37%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, April 6th. General Mills’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 71.64%.

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In related news, insider Jonathon Nudi bought 1,800 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, April 12th. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $57.45 per share, with a total value of $103,410.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 34,077 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,957,723.65. The purchase was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Company insiders own 1.30% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Baltimore Washington Financial Advisors Inc. bought a new position in General Mills during the fourth quarter worth approximately $15,491,000. Hallmark Capital Management Inc. bought a new position in General Mills during the second quarter worth approximately $103,000. Livingston Group Asset Management CO operating as Southport Capital Management bought a new position in General Mills during the second quarter worth approximately $107,000. Brick & Kyle Associates increased its position in General Mills by 6.7% in the second quarter. Brick & Kyle Associates now owns 1,592 shares of the company’s stock worth $114,000 after buying an additional 100 shares during the period. Finally, Penserra Capital Management LLC increased its position in General Mills by 100.0% in the third quarter. Penserra Capital Management LLC now owns 1,728 shares of the company’s stock worth $110,000 after buying an additional 864 shares during the period. 69.77% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

General Mills Company Profile

General Mills, Inc is a manufacturer and marketer of branded consumer foods sold through retail stores. The Company is a supplier of branded and unbranded food products to the North American foodservice and commercial baking industries. The Company has three segments: U.S. Retail, International, and Convenience Stores and Foodservice.

12 Month Chart for NYSE:GIS

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